Tag Archives: grow tent

Quantum Board grow tent: 80 cm x 80 cm

This build is adressed to new growers from the EU with corresponding product links. Start your grow today.

Complete build to grow cannabis at home
Full build of the 80 cm x 80 cm grow tent with 25l pots.

Everything you need to harvest  ~10 oz. of dry material every 3-4 months!
I will list the items that are absolute mandatory to grow first. There is a list with additional items, that I deem useful below. Get started on your first grow tent!

General Assumptions regarding your grow

  • Your grow medium of choice is soil.
  • You grow in a grow tent.
  • You start from seed.
  • You are a grow enthusiast who wants to make the most of a given space.
  • You do not have to run this hobby on a budget. (Options for that below)

List of items

TypeItemQty.PriceLink
grow tent3×3 Grow Tent154,95 €amazon
light*260W HLG QB1319,00 €todogrowled
pots19 l smart pots433,96 €amazon
soil*100 l Light Mix128,70 €amazon
nutrition*Trypack113,68 €amazon
ventilationClip Fans1-230,96 €amazon
filtersystem*
ACF+fan+tube194,90 €growmart
clima controlTemp./Hum. Monitor18,95 €amazon
on/off switchProgammable timer112,85 €amazon


Tot.597,95 €

The light – Quantum Board LEDs

The top notch grow LED technology. The set from HLG comes with every part you need tohook up your light. Check out the build instructions from LED gardener how to do this. 

Parts to build a QB LED light
Driver, cables, wago connectors – everything is prepacked in this DIY kit.

The set is particulary inexpensive for the power you get: 260 W of one of the most efficient lights out there. The board has the famous Samsung LM301b chip on the boards. With the driver running at 100% you can expect up to 2.61 µmol/J and over 170 lm/W. You can even ramp that up with two of the kits running both at 200 W. Read more on LED tech in the theory section.

The kit also comes with predrilles heatsinks to passively cool down the boards. This is possible since there are numerous chips far apart from each other on the board, so heat dissipation is easier. One more advantage: Light is distributed much more evenly across the canopy area. In my opnion (11.2018) Quantum Boards are the single best technology for homegrowers right now and HLG are on top of the game.

Soil and Nutrition

This is an optional choice but I had very good results with the products from BioBizz before. You can also choose an alternative like Kanamu Pacha, Canna or Plagron. Read carefully the nutrition and soil usage instruction. Overfeeding is one of the biggest problems for new growers.

The Filtersystem

Air circulation is key to have optimal temperatures inside your grow tent. Room temperature between 19°C and 22°C are very much optimal for a grow room. The light, no matter if LED or HPS, will create dissipative heat through the process of creating light and of course the photon output. Its necessary to get this air exchanged at least once every five minutes. A good fan will do this easily. Remember that the use of an active carbon filter will reduce the overall power of a fan, so you need to consider that when planning a grow room.

Active coal filter and fan combo
Air gets sucked through the active coal unit out of the tent. 

Do you need active intake? Not necessarily. A powerful fan will create negative pressure inside the the tent and air gets sucked through the gaps of the tent inside. Thats more than enough for a homegrower.

Additional Items

Model builders syringes

It can be hard to get the right amount of nutrients out of the bottles. Use syringes to get it right.

Watering can

I mean, a simple container that can hold 5-10 l of fluid will work, but a normal watering can will ease up the process significantly.

pH test kits

Tap water is oftentimes not suitable for watering cannabis in an optimal fashion. Try to keep track of the tapwateres pH levels and change it accordingly. The pH for soil grows can be buffered through the grow medium itself, but it is helping alot if you can dial it in before putting it in.

pH levels for soil grows should be between 6.0 and 6.5.

Sharp gardening scissors

Keep your stuff clean and only use it for plants. This prevents infections and pests from entering you grow area.

The Pro Grows: Chocolope by DNA Genetics

Why should you grow Chocolope

Chocolope is a direct descendent of OG Chocoloate Thai which is basically an Asian sativa landrace.

Chocolope cannabis in flower
Chocolope putting on the fall colors in pre harvest. She changed to red, golden colors. The buds have a baseball bat structure and she stretches like a real sativa lady


I got these seeds from key’s of choc thai back in the early 90’s we selected for the best traits and quick finishers. We made only a few seeds of this and Drawoh is the man thats keeping it alive by inbreeding it more.

DNA Genetics, Source

The other part is Cannalope Haze a crossing from Orginial Haze and a Sativa landrace from mexico. Overall the Chocolope has a nearly 100% Sativa background which she shows in her grow pattern!

Items and Tools that I used for that grow

TL;DR – Chocolope

  • Strain: DNA Genetics Chocolope feminized
  • From seed to weed: 143 days (veg 76 days, flower 67 days)
  • Wet harvest weight (wet trimmed): n.a.
  • Final dry yield: 70 gr (2.46 oz.)
  • Effect: High / Head / Euphoric / Hallucinogenic
  • Taste: Sweet / Earthy / Caramel

Grow it…
…if you have some vertical space to fill up. She is a stretcher.
…if you like haze.
…if you want to be able to be somewhat productive after a smoke.
…if you have the time to spread her out.

Don’t grow it…
…if you want small compact plants.
…if you are a militant kush lover.
…if you rather sit on a couch after consuming.

The Grow

Germination and failed start: Week 0 – 5

Chocolope Seedling in a hydroponic setup
Chocolope seedlings surrounded by hydrostones in an IKEA hydroponic setup. Source: homegrow-pro.com

This was my first test trying to implement a hydroponic (high pressure aeroponic) setup. The system is called Bifarm Aerokit and I failed this machine completely.
The setup was okay, and the Aerokit is running smooth. After 5 weeks in the aerokit the plant was still poorly developed and small. I think it was stunned due to wrong nutrition plans. It was a nice experience, but I wont come back all too fast doing hydro.

In short: The water chiller is running hot, heating up the grow space. Its also very loud. If you want to deal with two sources of heat (chiller and light) you will have to implement an AC unit aswell. That could cost more than the aeroponic setup can achieve in the end…

Chocolope in an aeroponic setup
Chocolope after 5(!) weeks in the aeroponic setup. After this i ditched the system and transplanted her alongside six other plants into BioBizz Allmix. 
Source: homegrow-pro.com

Vegetative Stage – Week 5 – 10

After transplanting the poor girl she started to thrive very fast. BioBizz soil is made for this! I gave her my way of low stress training along with alot of lollypopping. 

Chocoplope in vegetative stage in soil after transplantation
Chocolope getting the metal hook treatment. 
Source: homegrow-pro.com

After another four weeks of vegging she was ready to flower. I went exactly as the nutrient schedule says with the BioBizz starter kit. She was thriving til then. Chocolope is a very larky plant with long internodial distances. To keep her in check its helpful to cut away any 3rd generation side branches. If done right, she reacts very good to spreading and bending.

Chocolope after it got trained with LST
Final shape of the chocolope before she starts flowering. All budsites have roughly the same shape and size. She will thank you with uniform growth in the flowering stage. Prepare for a massive stretch! Source: homegrow-pro.com

Flowering Stage Week 10 – 19

Chocolope show her sativa descent in the flowering in full extend. She is a nasty stretcher and needs to be controlled. My phenotype built very dense and baseballbat-like colas that where stuffed with buds.

Grow conditions were far from optimal. The summer was very hot and dry, which also effect condiditons in tents, that are not fully climate controlled. Temperatures of 30°C and more were more standard than exception. But she dealt pretty decent with it.

Chocolope in flower
Chocolope in flower – she is a massive stretcher!

About 6 weeks into flowering I stopped the nutrient supply. She reacted by showing off her beuatiful fall colors.

Putting Chocolopes stretch into perspective: 
She is in corner at the back left more than double the height of the critical directly in front of her.

Bad grow conditions and harvest

In the end the plant the conditions went worse: Moderate spider mite infestation and very few cases of bud rot needed to be adressed and quite a number of buds got lost in the process. I also tried to use neem oil against the mites in the late flowering stage, wich i would not recommend to anyone. Just throw the buds away if you dont like it.

Pro Tip: Do not spray any pesticide or insecticide on your plants while flowering. Its better to get useful predators to deal with these pests. You want to consume the product in some way. And you can not really clean the surface – like tomato or a pickle.

Pro Tip: Try to keep your temperature at 25°C +-/3°C and the humidity low in flowering to prevent bud rot.

Spider mite damage on chocolope
Spider mite damage on the leafs. Several buds had to be thrown away because of pest damage and bud rot.

Harvest Chocolope is a breeze.  The phenotype has a very nice leaf to bud ratio and can be manicured with ease. 

Pro Tip if you have spider mites on your plants at the end of a grow cycle: Hang the colas upside down. The mites are always looking for the highest spots on the plant and will gather around the stalk or branch of the cola. You can just burn them away with a lighter. Do not forget to clean your grow and dry area very thoroughly. Mites are a bitch to deal with. Make sure, they stay dead.

Sugary trichome on a chocolope cola.
Pictures with flash enabled really bring out the trichome density on that strain. She is covered in sugar!

Consuming Chocolope

Chocolopes effect is a clear high. Get out to your favourite smokespot in the green and get going. The effect is pretty strong and caused a few visual and auditive hallucinations. Prepare to get a good bit of tunnel vision and subtle music you might hear in the sounds of nature around you. After a while it really clouds your mind and you will drift away. This is strain is nice if you are alone and want a bit of time with you and your mind.
It also does not effect you for the rest of the day. You will get clear very lean but after a bit of time.
The taste is very sweet and earthy. The typical haze smell is missing, which is unusal for a sativa dominant plant, making this strain more atypical. One could also reason this characteristic comes from the bad grow conditions. We will know, when I grow her again.

Setup for the Avid smoker – The 3×3 grow tent

Grow tent in full flower
You can do this, with a setup described in this section. Source: homegrow-pro.com

Everything you need to harvest  10 oz. of dry material every 3-4 months!
I will list the items that are absolute mandatory to grow first. There is a list with additional items, that I deem useful below. Get started on your first grow tent!

General Assumptions

  • Your grow medium of choice is soil.
  • You grow in a grow tent.
  • You start from seed.
  • You are a grow enthusiast who wants to make the most of a given space.
  • You do not have to run this hobby on a budget. (Options for that below)

List of items

TypeItemQty.PriceLink
grow tent3×3 Grow Tent1$90amazon
light*400W COB Light 1$600timbergrowlights
pots3 gal airpots4$50amazon
soil*60l specialized soil1$15 – $30(see below)
nutrition*Trypack1$15(see below)
ventilationClip Fans1-2$10-$20amazon
filtersystemACF+fan+tube1$90amazon
clima controlTemp./Hum. Monitor1$3amazon
on/off switchProgammable timer1$12amazon
Tot.~$895
  • Tents are great to keep control of every aspect. You can change temperatur, brightness, humidity and even simulate seasons in there! Its absolutely necessary to get your tent completely dark to your needs. If you have a closet or a room where you can manage to create pitch black darkness, you dont need a tent. The brand of the tent does not really matter. 
  • Light: Your articficial sun. Good growlights are hard to find in the LED jungle. Read more about lights below.
  • Pots: They come in different varieties. Plastic, fabric, with holes in it from 0.5 to 30 gal. I choose the airpots, because they let air move through the soil, and roots are pruned naturally at the outlets, preventing root rot or rootbound plants.
  • Soil: Do not buy common gardening soil. Cannabis roots need space to roam. Specialized cannabis soil has the right consistency and is often perfectly balanced with nutrition. You can also cook your own soil!
  • Nutrition: Personal opinion about nutrition – as long as its marketed for cannabis and does not kill your plants every brand seems legit. It is more like a personal decision what kind of nutes you use…
  • Ventilation: Moving air prevents bud rot and keeps the branches moving. That creates resistance and your plant will grow thicker and stringer. Keep the vents on 24/7.
  • Filter system: Your main exchange for air. If you have to grow stealthy or at home you do not want to have the smell leave the tent. Get one of these asap.
  • Clima Control: Really important to keep track of your values in there. You want to know the numbers. Once you know its over 34°C in your tent all the time, you know its time to do something about it. Same with humidity.
  • On/Off switch: Over the course of 100 days of a grow you dont want to hit the switches twice a day at the same time. Automate that.

*

The light

Yes, the light is the most expensive item in a grow operation. Yes, you can save money on light, but this is the best option for a grow room of that size. Its cool, quiet and runs damn bright. It has the most recent technology behind it and does not need extra cooling. But there are alternatives.

PRO TIP: You need at least 35W/ft² of high quality LED/COB light or at least 50W/ft² if you use CMH/HPS lights, if you want max out the tent potential! There are thousands of options. Just make sure its a grow light. Spectrum, PAR, PPFD values and color of light are also important properties. Read everything about the theory behind light here.

Alternative 1 – The Quantum Board

Horticulturelightinggroup.com has a very decent 320 Watt kit. It has alot of advantages like better light distributions or overall efficiency. I just did not link it as first option because it only has 320 Watts, and we wanted to get the most of our room with the given conditions. If you are able to build these lights yourself with a kit, buy these! The magic behind Quantum boards are LM56c or LM301b LED chips from Samsung. If you can find other distributors using these chips, you can go for it.

Grow tent with a quantum board
Quantum boards have an exceptional efficiency and overall light distribution!

Alternative 2 – Other LED Distributors

Its true, Timbergrowlights is just an option when in comes to LED lights. There are several chips out there that are awesome to grow weed with.
Timber makes use of Citizen CLU048, Cree CXB3590 and Vero29 COB LEDs. But other companies do it aswell!
Cobshop.net has a 3×3 kit including 4 COBs for $480, but they dont disclose how many Watts you get in the end. I assume its 200 W, so only half of my first option.

Alternative 3 – Low Budget only

I will list them here only because they work. But do not expect wonders. Im talking about the infamous blue/purple or pink lights you find on amazon.
NO, they almost NEVER deliver the amount of power they have in their names, NO you dont need just one, but at least 3 of these “300W” varieties you find online. Which one you take does not really matter, they are all ok. They only use the cheapest LED technology, including chips and drivers. If you spend $210 on three of them, you will be able to light up your tent properly. But remember to tune up the ventilation system, because three of these bad boys run pretty hot in a 3×3.

Blurple light tent
Blurple lights – They just won’t leave me alone! Low costs – low yields.

Alternative 4 – HPS lights

A 600 W HPS light will get you pretty far in a tent like this. And it costs only $130. This can reduce the inital cost significantly, but keep in mind that these light run HOT. And by that i mean shit-i-might-need-an-AC-in-my-tent HOT. The price is low, but running this shit can cost you! Save some money, ditch the AC and the pay only 2/3 to run a sweet LED light in there and pay less for your production.

Alternative 5 – Build your own COB or Quantum Board light

www.ledgardener.com, is the best source for that. There will be a guide here soon….

Soil and nutrition – Globalization and availability

If you live in Europe you have different soil companies than in the US. So while you can buy BioBizz in Europe pretty cheap, it is better to choose Fox Farm. 

The right soil is very important for your grow. Your roots want a pretty loosy, oxygenated environment. Many soil companies put peat (turf) in their soil which is very harmful to the environment. Check the ingredients, if you want to save the planet.

EU soil recommendations

US soil companies

Nutrition

Same with as soil. It seems like there is a new nutrition company out there every week. Even the breeder try to jump on the nute train and handing out their own nutrition along the seeds. (Royal Queen Seeds and Green House Seeds for example.)

I will also only recommend nutrition that have an organic base. I just do not believe in chemicals, but thats up for discussion.

EU nutrition recommendations

US nutrition recommendations

Useful additions

There are a lot more items making your tent easier. These are nice to have, but not 100% necessary. This list is not not yet completed.

Pre-grow

  • Depending on your method of germination you will need papertowels or kitchen paper.
  • Since germination needs a dark, moist and warm environment, you might need a propagation box. I just put them in an old cookiebox on my PC.
  • Do not touch seeds! Use a tweezer.

Seedling and vegetative stage

  • Seedlings do not need flooded with water. Use a pump sprayer and be careful!
  • If you plan to train your plants, you need gardening wires or metal stakes. Or anything else you can come up with. You can also just use a cord and bind them down.
  • Use sharp scissors, knifes or even scalpels to cut leafs!
  • If you see pests like mites or thripes, treat them with bio degradable organic insecticide. Be careful with that!

Flowering stage

  • Some genetics produce fat buds. Too fat to hold them in place. Use plant yoyos or bamboo sticks and wire to hold them in place.
  • If you see any pests in the flowering stage do not spray the buds with insecticide. Use predatory bugs to fight them. This is your chance to have a personal ladybug army in your garden.
  • Jewelers loupes help you watching the trichomes and help to determine the harvest window.

Harvest, Drying and Curing